Why Your Business Needs a Formal Email Policy
Why is it imperative to have a company Email Policy? It is simply good business, that’s why.
Having a clear and detailed email policy is critical for the long term. As a result, you can enforce or react to situations that may arise later.
Smart Business Practices
Let’s assume you have the best folks in the world working for you. You know them and trust them. That still does not negate the need for having a Business Email Etiquette policy in place. That’s more of a reason to have one.
Employees understand and appreciate having policies in place to guide them. Moreover, to help them avoid any potential problems.
The best-case scenario is that you will never need to refer to your policy statement due to employee behavior. However, if you find yourself in that situation down the road, you will be relieved you have terms and conditions in place for your protection.
Technology is part of the workplace now, including internet and email access. Employees use your network, equipment, and brand’s email address every day, all day.
This makes it easy for employees to surf the web on company time. As a result, they can share non-business-related emails and links, in some cases becoming less efficient and not paying attention to the job at hand. Similarly, this can lead to circulating unnecessary or inappropriate messages and illegally copying sensitive business content.
Improper business email activities can lead to:
Abuse of email may also lead to:
Business Email Policy Basics
Any email policy should start with the basics. You will want to review each carefully and then jot down and add the specifics unique to your business.
- Specify that the computer and email system are for authorized purposes only. State clearly that while on company time use of Company equipment is solely for business activities related to the performance of an employee’s job responsibilities.
- Set clear expectations of employee privacy. Trends indicate that most email policies currently in place explicitly include that while on company time, employees should not expect to have any privacy when using company-owned equipment and resources.
- Establish monitoring as the right of the employer. Employes should expect and acknowledge this fact.
- Make sure employees understand to avoid improper use of copyright-protected material.
- Outline the specific types of content that employees need to avoid in their email communications.
- Have employees sign and date the email policy. Put a copy in their personnel file and give them a copy to have on hand for reference purposes.
Be Smart and Have a Business Email Policy
For more details and guidance, check out my Business Email Etiquette eBook. My eBook also includes a complete Business Email Policy to tailor to your specific needs.
By having an email policy in place, you will ensure employees know all the issues and best practices necessary to email properly when using your company’s resources to communicate online.